Myrtle Cottage, Wellow, BA2 8QS
Tel: 01225 830159
Minutes of a meeting of the Parish Council on Monday 12th July 2010
at 8pm in the Village Hall
Present: Cllrs Andrews, Betts, Colston, Halewood, Lewis, Martin (Chairman), Pike and Watson. Dist Cllr Butters.
Eight members of the public in attendance.
10.082 To accept apologies for absence.
Cllr Witty sent her apologies
10.083 Declarations of interest in any matters on the agenda or in April 2010 minutes.
Cllr Halewood expressed some interest in the proposal for a disabled parking bay. It was agreed that he would not need to withdraw when that item was discussed.
10.084 To confirm minutes of meetings held on June 14th 2010
It was unanimously agreed that these were a true and accurate record and were accordingly signed by the Chairman.
10.085 To report matters arising from the minutes and not on the agenda.
1. Decisions received:
a. 10/01331/FUL: Upper Twinhoe Farm Upper Twinhoe Wellow Bath Bath and North East Somerset. Description of Proposal: Erection of a detached car port. WITHDRAWN
b. 10/01330/LBA: Upper Twinhoe Farm Upper Twinhoe Wellow Bath Bath and North East Somerset. Description of Proposal: Internal and external alterations for the erection of new garden room extension. WITHDRAWN
c. 10/01333/LBA: Upper Twinhoe Farm Upper Twinhoe Wellow Bath Bath and North East Somerset. Description of Proposal: External works for the erection of a detached car port. WITHDRAWN
d. 10/01329/FUL Upper Twinhoe Farm Upper Twinhoe Wellow Bath Bath and North East Somerset. Description of Proposal: Erection of new garden room extension. WITHDRAWN
The withdrawals listed above were duly noted.
2. New Applications:
Field Parcel 7715
The Chairman referred to an email sent by the Case Officer a Consultant Planner at B&NES, to District Councillor Butters. He has since spoken with Cllr Kew, Chairman of the DC Committee, and has written to him to point out that, having read the Case Officer’s report regarding the decision to permit the application in respect of Field Parcel 7715, it is clear that submissions from the public against the proposal were not considered and that the view of Wellow Parish Council was not considered either. The Chairman also made the point in his letter that this is the second occasion on which the Parish Council’s views were not addressed.
The Chairman referred to an email received from the Transportation Planning Department at B&NES in reply to his request that the flight of steps to the west of St Julian’s Church from the pavement down to the road be renovated since, at present, they slope downwards and are consequently unsafe.
The Council had replied to say that they could not justify the estimated cost of £2000 for the construction of a new flight of steps with a handrail but would provide management if the Parish Council decided to fund the works themselves.
Cllr Andrews felt that if the steps really were dangerous they should be closed. The Chairman said that Wellow Parish Council would not be able to provide funding at the level suggested.
Richard Holland, a member of the public, felt that it could probably be done much cheaper. The Clerk was asked by the Chair to respond to B&NES and to copy the response to Mrs. Vesey who lives near the steps and who originally raised the matter. GW
The financial report was unanimously approved but the Council felt that we should withhold payment to B&NES in respect of grass cutting on the playing field until we received an official invoice.
The Clerk had suggested paying the bill since the contract specified that payment was due when the agreement was signed. The Chairman said that he had already sent the contract. The Clerk was asked to inform B&NES accordingly.
The Clerk reported that the documentation in respect of the external audit was ready for signing and the Council’s internal auditor confirmed that he had inspected the records and that all was in order. The Chairman requested approval of the submission and this was agreed unanimously.
10.089 Local Government Cuts
The Chairman referred to an email he had received from District Cllr Butters which asked whether Parish Councils would be willing to undertake work in addition to street cleaning.
The Chairman said that, at this stage, the contents of District Cllr Butter’s email was “for information only” but that members of the Parish Council should think about the implications prior to the next meeting in September.
10.090 Parish Plan
Updates were received on:
(a) Traffic calming
Cllr Watson reported that the materials needed to complete the North and West Gates were still not available and that B&NES will not move on a request to bring the West Gate closer to the village. Members of the public expressed concerns over safety because of the present state of the gates and Cllr Watson suggested that they should write to B&NES.
The area around the school has been partially completed but we are, again, still waiting for the cobbles and this is also the case outside the Fox and Badger.
New drainage will have to be installed in the area around the school since the new works have resulted in the formation of large pools of water on the south side of the crossing area.
Cllr Betts reported that the highways engineer who has been overseeing the traffic calming project is moving to another department but that he has retained responsibility for the project.
Cllr Betts also expressed concern about the barriers at the two gates.
Richard Holland, a member of the public, asked whether cobbled strips could be placed across the road where we would prefer the West Gate to be positioned to act as a further reminder to drivers to slow down. Cllr Watson agreed that this would be a good idea.
The Chairman reported on the continuing problems regarding the crossroads at Mill Hill and Farm Lane. Farming vehicles were often unable to turn into the High Street from Mill Hill because of cars parked on the corner at the north side of the junction.
He reported that he had attended a site meeting with B&NES engineers but that there was nothing that could be done except to place temporary “No Parking” bollards there. It was suggested that Police No Parking bollards might be more effective.
Cllr Pike highlighted the danger to farm traffic as once a fully laden tractor and trailer stops on Mill Hill it can be very difficult to get started again and there is every danger of rolling backwards.
Cllr Lewis suggested erecting a small “No Parking” sign and Cllr Pike agreed that this would be a good idea.
The Chairman also reported that it was intended to close Farm Lane from August 5th. The Highways Department would inform those residents affected and so the Parish Council did not need to get involved.
Cllr Halewood produced some new designs for signage which he had received and the Clerk agreed to scan and circulate them by email.
The question of funding for new signs was raised and Cllr Betts said that funds had been made available in connection with Wellow 2000 but that the Millennium Committee was disbanded long ago and it was unlikely that any records survived. The Chairman asked her to make enquiries.
(b) 20 mph speed limit
The Chairman reported that the present advisory speed limit would become mandatory once the traffic calming measures had been completed but that at a recent PACT meeting he had been informed that the police would not be willing to enforce it. They would, however, act upon information received from Community Speedwatch of speeding motorists.
The Chairman said that we should continue to press for action on speeding drivers and asked Cllr Betts to look into the possibility of setting up a Community Speedwatch programme. SB
(c) Community minibus
Cllr Colston reported that he had earlier attended a Minibus Committee Meeting and gave an outline of what had been discussed.
A paid driver has been appointed for the early morning runs but not for the afternoon ones. There will be a commuter run into Bath at 7.15 terminating in Queens Square. The bus would then return to Wellow in time to take pupils to school, leaving at 8.15 and going to St Gregory’s, Beechen Cliff and, possibly, Culverhay.
There would be a “volunteer” run to Odd Down Park and Ride at 9.30 and 12.30. The bus would return to Wellow at 1pm ready for the afternoon runs at 3.15 to schools and at 5.15 to pick up commuters.
The commuter fare would be £5 return.
Cllr Pike asked about other fares but this still under discussion by the relevant committee. It was expected, though, that the return fare to the Park and Ride would be around £2.
Cllr Andrews asked whether other people could travel on the school runs. Cllr Colston said that it would depend upon there being any seats available but that he could see no objection.
The Chairman asked what would happen if the paid driver was ill and Cllr Colston replied that a volunteer would need to step in.
The Chairman advised Cllr Colston that a request had already been made to the Committee regarding the provision of an invoice for the purchase of the minibus addressed to The Parish Council which would enable the VAT to be reclaimed and was still awaited.
(d) Play area
Cllr Lewis said that some safety matting had been placed in the play area but that the next site meeting would not be held until the autumn. Some funds were left over from the original grant but they could not be used for repairs.
Cllr Halewood said that children had said to him that some items were unsafe but Cllr Lewis replied that he was not aware of this.
Cllr Betts drew attention to the rubbish that is left in the play area, particularly after Youth Club meetings on Wednesday evenings. Cllr Colston said that, if this continued, the Tuck Shop would be closed.
10.091 Village Hall
Cllr Betts informed the Council that the Village Hall would be closed from July 26th until a week before the Flower Show for refurbishment.
10.092 1, West End Cottages
Cllr Colston advised members that he had nothing to report but was due to attend a meeting with the lawyers on July 13th.
10.093 Office / Shop adjacent to the Fox and Badger
Cllr Colston said that he had no further news at this time.
10.094 B&NES Chairman’s Awards
The Chairman asked the members of Wellow Parish Council to nominate people together with an explanation of why an award would be merited.
(a) The Chairman drew attention to a letter received from Simon de Beer, Policy and Environment Manager at B&NES relating to Core Strategy and in particular the proposals to remove certain locations from the Green Belt.
(b) Application for a disabled driver parking bay. Councillors were referred to a note from Joanne Pike, Traffic Orders Officer at B&NES, asking the Parish Council to consider a request to provide a Disabled Parking Bay outside 10 Hungerford Terrace. The note was accompanied by a map.
Cllr Watson said that he was worried by long term implications in that granting this application could lead to many more. He wondered what would happen to the white lining if the applicant moved.
The Chairman felt that we had to agree to it since the note from Ms Pike said that “the application meets the criteria”. Cllr Andrews and others asked whether the bay could be marked out in the lay by adjacent to the proposed site. The Clerk was asked to advise the Council that this was indeed the Parish Council’s view. GW
10.096 Chairman’s Report
The Chairman advised that he had nothing additional to report to comments made during the meeting.
10.097 Any other business
(a) Cllr Pike reported that a number of chickens at the Community Farm had been taken by foxes.
(b) Cllr Andrews reported that the cemetery was being cleared by a group of “offenders “and asked whether they could make use of the Village Hall. Cllr Betts replied that the Village Hall was, in fact, already booked.
(c) Cllr Lewis expressed praise for Wellow Week.
(d) Cllr Andrews suggested that the Parish Council give some thought regarding how Wellow could celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012.
(e) District Cllr Butters added his praise regarding Wellow Week. He asked whether Shoscombe had had any input regarding the minibus. Cllr Colston replied that they had been asked but didn’t respond.
10.081 Date of next meeting
Agreed as Monday September 13th 2010 at 8pm in The Village Hall.
The meeting closed at 9.34pm.
July 16th 2010